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Much of Western society has made waves in the rights of LGBTQ people, but sadly, the same can't be said for everywhere else in the world.
To safeguard the safety of its LGBTQ users, Tinder has announced the launch of in-app safety feature 'Traveller Alert'.
Currently, nearly 70 countries have laws that effectively criminalise LGBTQ status. As of today (Thursday, 25th July), users that open the app in these countries will be greeted with an alert which will educate them about the potential dangers LGBTQ people face in that country.
The alert reads: "Based on your geographical location, it appears you're in a place where the LGBTQ community may be penalized. We want you to have fun but your safety is our #1 priority.
"Please proceed with caution and take extra care when making new matches and meeting new people you do not know."
As part of the feature, users who identify as LGBTQ will not automatically appear active on Tinder when they open the app in these countries. Instead, they will be offered the choice to remain hidden or go public, despite risks.
If they decide to remain public, Tinder will automatically remove information about their sexual orientation " to safeguard users from law enforcement agencies and individuals who may target them."
The in-app alert will also be activated if users open Tinder's Passport feature, a Tinder Plus or Gold feature that lets you connect with anyone in the world, whether you are in the country or not.
Speaking about the important update, Elie Seidman, CEO of Tinder, said: "We fundamentally believe that everyone should be able to love who they want to love - and we strive to reflect this in everything we do at Tinder.
"It is unthinkable that, in 2019, there are still countries with legislation in place that deprives people of this basic right."
She added: "We serve all communities - no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation - and we are proud to offer features that help keep them safe. This alert is an example of the many steps that we are taking to protect our users around the world."
The feature was created in collaboration with ILGA World, using data from their latest State-Sponsored Homophobia report, to decide which countries the alert should be deployed in.
In April, Brunei introduced new laws making sex between men an offence punishable by stoning to death.
Oppositely, as of 2019, there are 28 countries that recognise sam-sex marriage. In May of this year, Taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalise gay marriage and in 2018, India legalised gay sex.
Seems like a good move, Tinder.
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